What are the 7 Types of Network Topologies in Computer Networks?

The various network topologies in computer networks may be of interest to you if you are a network administrator or are considering a career in this sector. To be able to assist you in selecting the ideal configuration for various situations, we will define network topology, identify seven different configuration types, their advantages and disadvantages and go through their key features.


In this article, we will go through network topology in computer networks and its types in detail.


What is Network Topologies in computer networks?

Topology is the term used to describe the geometric depiction of the connections between computers. The topology of a communication network explains how various devices, nodes, or computers are interconnected. It shows how logically information moves across the network and how it is physically laid out. One physical topology and multiple logical topologies can form a computer network topology.

According to their physical locations, nodes, computers, and other items are connected to one another in a network according to its physical topology. It is necessary to check the physical setup of network cables and terminals. A logical topology, on the other hand, specifies how information travels between devices when using network protocols. It assesses how devices talk to one another inside.

As a result, from both a logical and physical perspective, network topology describes the conceptual shape, design, and architecture of a network.

You now have a fundamental knowledge of what network topology is, so let’s look at the different network topologies that we may make between computer devices.


What are the 7 types of Network Topologies in Computer Networks?

We will look at the network topology types along with their advantages and disadvantages.

  • Point-to-Point Network Topology


The point-to-point network topology is the most basic. In this case, there is no “mediator” between the two computers, resulting in a clear connection between them for the network.

The P2P architecture lacks a client and server because both devices fulfill the roles of both a client and a server. Since one machine may both download and transfer files to another, torrent is an example of a P2P topology.

These two hardware components in P2P could be two PCs, routers, switches, etc. The computer that requests the data is called the client and the computer that sends the requested data is called the server. Both devices can transmit and request data in a P2P network.


Now we will look advantages of Point-to-Point network topology.

Advantages of P2P Topology

  • P2P has a good response time
  • It provides large bandwidth and simple operation.
  • Compared to other connections, this one is significantly faster and more reliable because it has a direct link.
  • Single pcs are used to access the files, so a costly server is not necessary.
  • Additionally, each user controls their permissions, thus there is no need for a professional network technician.
  • It is a quick, easy, and practical method of joining two devices.

In addition to the advantages of p2p topology, there are a few cons too.

Disadvantages of P2P Topology

  • Security is a P2P network’s main drawback. Data on the computer can be read and written by a computer linked to another computer via P2P.
  • Its limitation to use in tiny spaces with close contact with computers is one of its downsides.
  • It is not feasible to back up files and folders remotely.


  • Bus Network Topology


A bus is a “main thoroughfare” in the computer world that is used to move data from one part to another.

The bus topology, where each computer equipment is connected to a single main cable, corresponds to this description in networking. In a bus architecture, the main wire links all the devices that are linked to it via connecting lines. A part known as a tap joins the patch connected to the main cable. The maximum size of the main cable and the number of drop lines are both limited because all data must pass through it.

As this topology has precisely two terminals, as a result, it is known as Linear Bus Topology.

Features of Bus Topology

  • Every time a node wants to communicate, it sends a message around across the network since the bus architecture is built to connect all stations via a single channel known as a backbone cable.
  • Every time a node wants to communicate, it sends a message around across the network since the bus architecture is built to connect all stations via a single channel known as a backbone cable.
  • When compared to other topologies, configuring a bus topology is rather easy because all stations in the network will get the message, regardless of whether it was acknowledged.
  • The message is transmitted to all the stations via the backbone cable, which is referred to as a “single carriageway.”
  • The most widely used access method for bus topologies is CSMA, or carrier sense multiple access. Due to the possibility of multiple devices sending data to the main connection simultaneously, this strategy is utilized to prevent data collisions.

What is the purpose of the CSMA Technique?

This technique, known as CSMA, was created to lessen the likelihood of accidents when two or more devices begin delivering signals at the same time.

Advantages of Bus Network Topology

The benefits of bus topology are:

  • Simple installation and application.
  • As compared to Mesh and star topology, fewer cables are needed.
  • The links of other devices on the network are unaffected by the failure of one device’s connection.
  • Because cable costs are significantly lower than those of other topologies, small networks frequently employ this topology.

Disadvantages of Bus Topology

In addition to the pros, there are a few cons too:

  • Equipment with specialized test capabilities is required to detect cable faults. If a cable fault happened, it would disrupt all the nodes’ communication.
  • Signals from two nodes will clash if they send messages at the same time.
  • The efficiency declines and is weakened when there are many endpoints and a lot of network traffic.
  • There is a maximum length for the principal cable. Only a specific amount of cable can be used.
  • Multiple devices use a single trunk cable. So, the bus network will become slower as we add more devices to it.


  • Star Network Topology


In a star design, every device in the network is connected to a central hub. Unlike mesh topology, which allows for instant connection between devices, star topology requires that all communications pass via the hub.

A device must first pass signals to the hub, which then sends them to the destination device, to convey information from one device to another.

Other devices linked to the hub are referred to as clients, and the central device is referred to as a hub.


A household wireless network, which connects all desktops, laptops, tablet devices, scanners, and cellphones to a single Wi-Fi connection, is a suitable illustration of this topology.

Active and Passive Hubs

Hubs can be either active or passive. active hubs comprise repeaters, even as passive hubs appear as dumb nodes. every node has a designated line that it uses to speak with the base station, which acts as a repeater for records transfer.


Advantages of Star Network Topology

  • Fixing in a star topology is far more effective than in a bus design.
  • Complicated network operations can easily be added using the star topology.
  • Each station has a unique link to the central hub, so a cable breakdown won’t affect the entire network. In addition to using coaxial cable, which is readily accessible, star topology networks are also less expensive.
  • The hub is easily scalable as new stations may be connected via its open ports.
  • A bandwidth of about megabits Per second is supported.
  • As a result of little network traffic, star topology promises quick speed.
  • Device insertion, removal, and movement are simple under a star topology.


Disadvantages of Star Topology

The cons of star topology are as follows:

  • Any of the devices cannot function without the hub if the hub goes down, this affects everything.
  • Because it is the hub of the star topology, the system needs more resources and ongoing management.
  • There is a limit to how many devices can be added because each one puts more strain on the central unit.
  • There is a limit to how many devices can be added because each one puts more strain on the central unit. As a result, it is inappropriate for huge networks.
  • Star topology installation is pricey.
  • A broken cable or improper connection could crash the network.
  • When large cable wiring is required, it can sometimes be difficult.

  • Mesh Network Topology


The mesh topology’s unique network architecture ensures that every computer on the network is accessible to every other computer. It establishes a point-to-point link between each device on the network. Certainly, the spider network of connectivity can be thought of as a mesh network.

There are two methods for data transfer in a mesh topology, namely:

  • Full Mesh Topology: Every network device is connected to every other node using this topology. The entire mesh provides the highest amount of redundancy despite being highly expensive.


  • Partial Mesh Topology: This option is less expensive because not all nodes are tied to one another, but there are still some “sufficient” connections. Naturally, it does not provide the same degree of redundancy as the entire mesh.


Advantages of Mesh Topology

Some benefits of mesh network topology are:

  • There are no data traffic issues as both devices have a dedicated connection which means the two devices are using the connection.
  • The network topology is reliable and robust because it prevents the interaction between other networks and failure between devices.
  • Due to the factthere may be a point-to-point link, unlawful access is not allowed with a mesh topology.
  • Since each device has its own connection, fault diagnosis is simple.
  • Communication is quick since each device on a network has its own dedicated connection.
  • It is possible to grow the network without upsetting present users.


Disadvantages of Mesh Topology

  • It must take up a significant number of I/O ports because every device must be able to communicate with other devices.
  • Scalability problems arise from the fact that a device cannot connect to numerous devices via a specific point-to-point link.
  • Becauseeach node is interconnected with each other nodes, setup is difficult.
  • It costs more since more wires are used.
  • To run the cables, a sizable area is needed.


  • Ring Network Topology

In a ring topology, each device communicates with two other devices along either side.  The device has two devoted point-to-point connections with devices on each side.  As it forms a ring, this structure has a ring topology.

Each tool in a ring topology has a repeater, which sends information that is destined for every other tool until the destination device receives it.  A gadget only sends data in one direction when it wishes to send it to another device.

Working of Ring Topology

  • In a ring network, data transfer is typically unidirectional. Devices A, B, C, and D, for instance, are interconnected in a closed system. Data sent from A to D must pass through B and C to get there. Directly sending from A to D is not possible because that would “alter the flow.”
  • When all the devices start sending data at the same time, accidents will also occur. To avoid this, the network will pass around a token (which is a frame that only endpoints are allowed to send data through).
  • Multiple tokens can be used in big ring networks to accelerate the procedure.
  • Ring networks can be made bidirectional to increase productivity and reliability by adding an additional independent set of links, i.e., each node will have a “forward ring” and “reverse ring.” It is referred to as a Dual Ring Topology.

To understand the token ring’s operation using a diagram, click here

Advantages of Ring Network Topology

  • Maintenance is easier because adding or removing a device from the topology just requires changing two links.
  • In a ringtopology, twisted pair cabling is usually employed because it’s far low cost and extensively reachable.
  • A system failure on one network won’t affect systems on other networks, making it easier to repair the problem on the failed system and reinstall it on the network.
  • There are numerous hardware and software technologies available for network monitoring and maintenance.
  • Because the messaging system isn’t always restricted to a single host laptop, it’s far a much better network.


Disadvantages of Ring Topology

Some drawbacks of ring network topology are listed below:

  • Based on how the ring network is set up, a single network break can theoretically still allow for normal operation. However, the ring network will basically split into two independent halves if there are two broken nodes.
  • Data traffic problems since the data are all moving in a circle.
  • High-speed LANs introduction made this topology less popular.
  • The ring’s constant circulation of topology signals leads to unwanted energy usage.
  • In a Ring topology, troubleshooting is a complex procedure.


  • Tree Network Topology


A sort of structure known as a “tree topology” involves a hierarchical connection between each computer. The traits of a bus topology and a star topology are combined in a tree topology which is why it is also called star bus topology.


A tree topology has the highest node, called the root node. All other nodes in a tree topology are offspring of the root node.


Advantages of Tree Topology

  • Simple to identify errors.
  • Small star systems of devices are formed, and these star networks are linked to one another utilizing bus topology.
  • In a modest star network, a gadget is simple to control.
  • The entire network is not brought down by a single system failure.
  • Because it allows for broadband transmission, this topology is commonly employed in business networks.
  • Expandinga node is short and easy.
  • Errordetection is a simple approach.
  • For each segment, there is a point-to-point connection.


Disadvantages of Tree Topology

In addition to the benefits, there are a few drawbacks to the tree topology.

  • Broadband transmission is expensive.
  • The attached nodes are disabled as well if the hub or extractor fails.
  • Relative to other topologies, it is pricey.
  • The network will also disintegrate if the root node does.
  • It gets challenging to solve the issue if the node develops any faults.



  • Hybrid Network Topology



Hybrid topology is the merging of different topologies. A hybrid topology connects several links and nodes to transport data.

Comparable topologies interacting with one another do not produce hybrid topology. For instance, if Bank has a bus topology in one area and a ring topology in another, interconnecting these two topologies will provide a hybrid topology.

Advantages of Hybrid Network Topology

Here are some benefits of hybrid topology:

  • An extremely efficient and adaptable networking topology
  • Flexible design that can grow or contract depending on the demands of the organization.
  • It offers straightforward error-detection methods and is simple to debug.
  • It has a dynamic network topology, which contributes to its efficiency.
  • The network is reliable because it won’t be affected by a malfunction in one area if it occurs in any other area.
  • Hybrid topology is particularly useful because it may be created in a way that maximizes the network’s strengths and minimizes its weaknesses.


Disadvantages of Hybrid Network Topology

As we have seen some benefits of hybrid topology, there are also a few drawbacks of this topology.

  • Complex design results in significant maintenance costs.
  • Installation of it is challenging.
  • Given that it may require the usage of numerous different networking equipment, so, it might not be the most economical option.


How should a network topology be chosen?

Here are some important elements to keep in mind when selecting the appropriate topology to construct a network on your business enterprise:

  • Bus topology is unquestionably the best and most affordable network installation, but a star topology is a good option if you need to use a smaller connection or plan to expand the network in the future.
  • If you want to employ twisted pair wires for networking, use star topologies.
  • A full mesh topology is a high-quality solution because every device is connected to every other tool.

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